There is always a risk of injury when driving on the road. But in Alabama, the risk of death while driving is much higher than the national average. But you can still stay safe, right?
The answer: Yes.
As it turns out, there are quite a few precautions you can take to avoid getting in a car accident. No matter where you are, follow these 7 safe driving tips from our best automobile lawyer from Pitman & Petro Attorneys at Law to make sure you don’t suffer an injury while on the go!
1. Wear a Seatbelt
This one might seem like a cliché, but it is important. On average, only 86% of people wear their seatbelts while driving. This may seem like a large percentage, but when you consider that 50% of people who die in car accidents were without a seat belt, you might realize just how important it is to wear your seatbelt. Millions of people wear their seatbelts, sure, but there are still millions of people who don’t. Those who don’t are at a significantly greater risk for injury while driving. You do not want to be one of those people! So, before you start driving, buckle up!
When buckling children, make sure they are securely fastened in the appropriate car seat. Do not dress your children in thick clothing, as thick clothing can prevent some seatbelts from latching all the way. Check out this website for more information about proper car seat usage.
2. Obey the Speed Limit
Maybe you’re in a rush because you’re late for work. Maybe you don’t want to miss the previews for that movie you want to see. Or perhaps you’re going out bowling or to a nice restaurant. No matter the occasion, never speed! You should always obey the speed limit. Speeding to get to your destination faster is not worth the risk of serious injury. Many car accidents occur because of speeding, and the results are never pretty. So obey the law, and let others who want to speed pass you by. It’s always better to arrive at your destination in one piece than it is to not arrive at your destination at all.
3. Use your Blinker
Many people think that using their blinkers is optional or unnecessary. This is a wrong way of thinking! On the contrary, using your blinker is in fact necessary to let other drivers know where you’re going. Using your blinker is especially important when changing lanes. If you do not use your blinker, drivers behind you may have a harder time deciphering where you intend to go. Many accidents are caused by the failure to signal, as the failure to signal results in miscommunication – or the lack of communication – between drivers. So be clear and courteous to others, and use your blinker.
4. Stay Vigilant
Staying vigilant is one of the most important keys to safe driving, especially when in Alabama. Our best automobile lawyer suggests always looking out for pedestrians. Alabama is not a very densely populated state, so it is especially important to keep an eye out for any surprises. Pedestrians can pop up out of nowhere, especially in Alabama. So keep a sharp eye out for pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcycle drivers alike.
There are other things you can do to stay vigilant while at the wheel. For example, getting a good night’s rest will keep you awake and sharp. Driving while tired is nearly as dangerous as driving while drunk, so don’t drive drowsy! If you are tired, pull over to the side of the road and take a quick power nap. Finally, you should stay on the lookout for other drivers! Just because you are a responsible driver doesn’t mean other people are, too. To avoid accidents with such unsafe drivers, you should be proactive and drive defensively. Keep an ample distance between yourself and others, and if you see someone driving aggressively, stay extra far away.
5. Maintain your Vehicle
Before even stepping foot in your vehicle, stop and ask yourself: “Is there anything wrong with my vehicle?” If you know something is wrong with it, do not drive it unless a professional says it is safe to do so. If possible, inspect your vehicle yourself or take it to a mechanic. You should regularly change the oil and check the tires’ traction and air pressure. Also, don’t forget to check the brakes, the engine, the windshield wiper fluid, and all other parts. You must make sure your vehicle is in optimal working order before driving. Otherwise, you could risk injuring yourself or others while on the road.
In addition, your vehicle should be equipped with an emergency kit. You should have, at minimum: a first aid kit with Band-Aids, gauze, antibiotic ointment, scissors, tape, a flashlight, a blanket, and a toolkit in case you need to repair your car. You should also keep snacks and water in your vehicle, just in case you breakdown and are stranded for a little while.
6. Don’t Drink and Drive
Never drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol! Many fatalities result each year from drunk or drugged driving. Alcohol and drugs impair your cognitive/motor capabilities, so driving a vehicle safely is out of the question. Don’t think, “I’m not that drunk,” or, “I know someone else who did it.” You might think an accident could never happen to you, but then it does. Don’t risk your safety! If you drank alcohol or consumed drugs, wait until you are sober to drive. Alternatively, you can have a friend or family member drive you where you need to go, or you can call a Lyft or Uber.
7. Know the Road
You should know the road before you begin driving to your destination. So, what will the weather be like? Is there typically traffic during the time you’ll be leaving? What about construction? You should also be aware of other common road rules and hazards, such as how to go around a round-about, right-of-way and passing rules, headlight rules, etc. Knowing the road along with the rules of the road will help keep you safe while driving.
Also, you should plan your route ahead of time. To do this, you should use a GPS app that is available on most mobile devices. Most GPS apps can give you information such as the fastest route, if there will be any delays or construction, if there are any accidents up ahead, etc. Using a GPS to reach your destination can help save you time and stress from not knowing where you’re going.
Need an Automobile Lawyer?
Were you injured in a car crash? Call Pitman & Petro Attorneys at Law! We have years of experience in personal injury, and we won’t rest until we obtain compensation for YOU! Call us anytime at (256) 533-5000. In addition, you can contact us online and utilize our LiveChat feature. Consultations are absolutely free. We do not collect any fees unless we win your case, so don’t wait! Call Pitman & Petro today!
The information on this blog is for general information purposes only. Nothing herein should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.